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Monday, June 10, 2024

Low cost dental care for South County seniors coming to Westerly

PACE-RI and Wood River Health team up

Wood River Health has partnered with PACE-RI to provide high quality diagnostic and preventative dental health services at PACE-RI’s Westerly adult day center and health clinic.

PACE-RI is a health plan for adults aged 55 and older who qualify for nursing home level of care but want to remain safe at home in the community instead. PACE-RI ensures its participants receive an array of medical, behavioral, and social services, focusing on prevention and extending health spans. Wood River Health partnered with PACE-RI to provide dental services at 5 Union Street in Westerly, RI on the first Friday of every month.

A Federally Qualified Health Center, Wood River Health delivers high-quality and affordable healthcare services through a compassionate, team-based approach. Board-certified dentists and dental hygienists provide comprehensive dental services to patients of all ages with a focus on preventative and restorative dentistry.

“Wood River Health works diligently to increase Washington County’s access to dental care,” stated President and CEO Alison L. Croke, MHA. “One way we have removed barriers to access is by partnering with PACE-RI to provide dental hygiene services at its Westerly Adult Day Center.”

“PACE-RI was founded to help local elders live safely at home, stay out of the hospital and nursing home, and reduce strain for their caregivers,” stated Chief Executive Officer Joan Kwiatkowski. “Like Wood River Health, we understand the benefits of ensuring our community members have access to preventative, holistic care. Together, we are connecting seniors with the high-quality dental health services they need to thrive.”

The American Dental Association reports that two-thirds of Americans over the age of 65 have some form of dental disease including tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health concerns. As people age, their teeth require more maintenance and care due to gum disease or other complications. Individuals who skip their regular dental checkups risk getting tooth and gum disease and have increased risk of developing diseases related to oral health.

“Washington County’s senior population is experiencing a steady, increased demand for high-quality dental care,” stated Wood River Health’s Chief Dental Officer Tiffanie Waldeck, DMD. “To meet this need, we have partnered with PACE-RI to provide diagnostic and preventative oral hygiene services to their participants.”

Jennifer Lavoie, RDH, PHDH provides safe and effective preventative oral health treatment to PACE participants monthly. Lavoie received her Registered Dental Hygienist degree in 1997 and Public Health Dental Hygienist degree in 2020, both from Community College of Rhode Island. She has been employed by Wood River Health since 2006.


PACE-RI,, is a non-profit health plan for adults 55 and older who have complex or chronic health needs and wish to remain living at home. Founded in 2005, PACE-RI provides both insurance and medical care, as well as a range of health and social services that include adult day care, transportation, and meals at sites in East Providence, Woonsocket, Westerly and Newport. Taking a comprehensive approach to well-being, PACE-RI keeps medically complex participants out of nursing homes an average of four additional years as compared to their counterparts living independently without the supports provided by PACE.

About Wood River Health

Since 1976, Wood River Health has delivered medical, dental and social services to the communities of southwestern Rhode Island and southeastern Connecticut. Its mission is to provide its patients with high-quality and affordable health care services through a compassionate, team-based approach. Its vision is for every member of its community to experience physical, emotional and social well-being.